Govt seeks feedback on mobile spectrum

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Govt seeks feedback on mobile spectrum

The Federal Government is seeking feedback from the community on how it can improve management of Australia's telecommunications spectrum.

The call for consultation comes as the Morrison Government seeks to reform the Radiocommunications Act of 1992 which it said would provide spectrum users with more certainty and support longer-term investment in new mobile technologies.

Communications minister Paul Fletcher said the spectrum was a critical yet finite resource that underpinned the digital economy so it was important legislation remained fit-for-purpose.

“The Morrison Government has a clear reform pathway to modernise our spectrum management framework, which will deliver benefits to the telecommunications industry by cutting red tape,” Fletcher said.

“A more flexible framework that provides a longer-term investment horizon will allow industry to better adapt to future innovations and changing demand for spectrum, including the rollout of future generation mobile technology.”

The consultations aim to make amendments to the act to clarify its purpose while also streamlining allocation and reallocation processes.

The potential amendments include extending maximum spectrum licence terms from 15 to 20 years and maximum apparatus licence terms from 5 to 20 years; increased flexibility in decision making for allocating spectrum and apparatus licences; modernising compliance and enforcement; and more information gathering powers for the Australian Communications and Media Authority.

After the consultation period, the government expects the amendments will be finalised and introduced to parliament by the end of the year. Interested parties can submit their responses until 17 July 2020.

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